How to save your entire life digitally
Let us begin with a thought
You just finished celebrating your 80th birthday. The few friends you have, who are still alive with you are there to share your nostalgia. You talk about all the precious moments you had, all the beautiful people you met and talked to, all the lovely faces who were a part of your life at some time, but are not anymore. Well, you push your brain hard to remember them, and you do, but the memories are just not clear enough, though they are able to arouse those emotions.
Now let us add technology to that thought
Well, after having talked enough, you now decide to share those moments in high-definition with your friends and grand-children. You just bring out your old box of DVDs and Blu-rays ( oh, and the other storage technologies which will be invented in the coming years ). You pick the DVD which is labeled year 2010 Part I (when you were just 26 years old) and start playing it. You have complete records for each and every day for the whole month of January. You just fast-forward to January 26th 2010, and you see your old flame, dancing with you at a friend's birthday bash, and you get that warm feeling inside your heart, telling you that, "Well, whatever I did, I think my life was not so bad after all !" And your grand-children appreciate how cool you were.
Is that really possible?
A wonderful thought that was, wasn't it? Who would not want to do that? Alright, now considering today's technology, that is very much possible, though it might get a whole lot easier in another year or two.
So, all you need to start saving your life digitally, is a camera that is small enough, that you can carry it easily and keep it in a position to capture video properly without having to hold it in your hands all the time. For this purpose, we need a small digital/web camera. It should come with an embedded microphone, so that it captures everything you see and hear perfectly. It has to be wireless, so you can beam your videos to your laptop very easily.
Well, the cheapest and smallest such cameras are available from Logitech and Microsoft. The latest models come with automatic focusing and face-tracking software built into them, making the videos much better. So, now, you just need to have them as a locket hanging from your neck, or clip them onto your pocket or make a cap that has support for this camera. Yeah, this is the least convenient part of the whole exercise, but once you do that, you will start capturing all those moments, precious or otherwise.
What about the storage?
Today, cost of storage is very low. If you are capturing the video at VGA resolution, a whole month of your waking life, should fit into one or two DVDs. Well, 15-20 DVDs per year is not a huge investment, considering the great returns. It will only get cheaper every year, and there might soon be technology that enables you to store an entire year in a single disc (or whatever it might look like).
It is something that I have been toying around with for quite a while now, and I feel really happy about doing it. Being able to look at all those precious moments I had in this year, gives me a great feeling. I am sure it will be an unimaginable feeling 40 years later.
Oh, and I don't just store videos. I also store webpages, scans of articles and almost everything I think is interesting at the current moment.
It might seem like a weird idea, but if implemented, your life will be different. And there is a lot of learning that you get, when you can look back at what you have done.
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